Obesity: An unitended consequence of taxes and the gender wage gap?
AbstractWe perform a dynamic general equilibrium analysis of the observed increase in the weight of the average American adult over the 1960-2005 period. Existing evidence suggests that this fifteen pound increase in weight can be attributed to the dramatic raise in the consumption of foods prepared away from home, which resulted in higher caloric intake. We evaluate the impact of the observed trends in taxes and in the gender wage gap on the caloric intake, food composition and time use of American adults, by gender and marital status. Surprisingly, we find that lower taxes and gender wage gap can account for more than two thirds of the changes in calories consumed and food composition observed in the data. Our general equilibrium analysis can also account for some of the observed movements in time devoted to market and food preparation activities, and reconciles the simultaneous increase in price and consumption of foods prepared away from home.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by EconWPA in its series Macroeconomics with number 0503014.
Length: 19 pages
Date of creation: 17 Mar 2005
Date of revision: 28 Mar 2005
Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 19
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Obesity; Price per calorie; Gender wage gap; Taxes; Technological change; general equilibrium; price of food; relative price of food;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- E - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2005-04-16 (All new papers)
- NEP-HEA-2005-04-16 (Health Economics)
- NEP-MAC-2005-04-16 (Macroeconomics)
- NEP-PBE-2005-04-16 (Public Economics)
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